By CHRIS COLLINS
Of the Baker City Herald
A plan to help alleviate traffic congestion at Churchill School will be implemented Tuesday.
Beginning Tuesday, buses will pick students up in front of the school at 3451 Broadway St. as classes are dismissed. In the past, buses have loaded and unloaded on the 16th Street side of the building. That area now will be reserved for parent parking, according to Mark Bogart, school principal. Parents are encouraged to park diagonally on the school side of the street to pick up their students, he added.
The traffic problem became especially unwieldy this fall because of a change in the school schedule and changes in bus schedules.
Under the revised school day, Churchill students are dismissed at 3 p.m. daily. Thats 10 minutes earlier than the former dismissal time of 3:10. Buses begin arriving shortly after 3 oclock and make their way to Baker High School, which has continued to end its school day at 3:10 p.m.
A committee of parents and staff members considered how to best address the traffic-congestion issue to ensure student safety and came up with the solution that will be implemented Tuesday, Bogart said.
About half of the schools 200 students will wait at the front of the school for their bus to arrive, he added. Parents are especially encouraged to use the 16th Street pick-up site. Students also may be picked up on the school side of 17th Street, Bogart said.
Parents are urged not to park across from the school, which requires students to cross the heavily trafficked 17th Street, Bogart said.
Parent volunteers and staff will direct traffic for the first few days to help ease the transition to the new system.
Also in an effort to improve student safety, the city will paint four crosswalks at street crossings to help alert drivers that students are crossing the streets en route to and from school.